‘Get out of Traian Square!’: Roma Stigmatisation as a Mobilising Tool for the Far Right in Timişoara, Romania

Remus Creţan, Thomas Anthony O'Brien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Post-communist Central and Eastern Europe has seen far right movements and parties gain considerable ground by drawing on nativist and ethnic claims to call for a return to an imagined past. In Romania, far right groups have been able to capitalise on a sense of injustice while also playing on historically negative feelings towards the Roma community. These patterns have been seen in Timişoara where the group Noua Dreaptă (New Right) has established a foothold over the past decade by emphasising claims that blame Roma for loss of built heritage and corruption in the administration of property restitution. The aims of this paper are to 1) examine the emergence of Noua Dreaptă and its use of Roma stigmatisation, and 2) consider the ways extreme views are normalised by appealing to beliefs and perceptions. The findings of the paper show that pre-existing prejudices can be a powerful force to not just target marginalised communities, but also challenge administrative practices and build organisational support. Focusing at the level of the city, it is possible to identify the way these claims can be more precisely calibrated to draw on concerns that circulate within the community.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)833-847
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Urban and Regional Research
Issue number5
Early online date17 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - 16 Aug 2019

Bibliographical note

© 2019 Urban Research Publications Limited. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details.


  • Roma
  • Radical Right
  • Stigmatisation
  • Romania
  • Populism
  • populism
  • stigmatization
  • Timişoara
  • Roma people
  • radical right

Cite this